Benefactors Rosalie and Isadore Sharp, founders of the famed Four Seasons Hotel chain, have pledged an additional $1 million to OCAD University, Canada’s largest art, design and digital media university.
The latest Sharp donation follows the pledge of the previous commitment of $3 million, in 2014, to support the enhancement of the façade of the Rosalie Sharp Pavilion.
The Rosalie Sharp Pavilion, a separate building at the corner of McCaul and Dundas Streets, will house the OCAD University Experiential Learning Centre, a student-focused centre dedicated to studio-based learning across the university’s program areas, partnerships with community and industry, and training in professional and business skills.
Phased renovations are well underway at OCAD University’s Experiential Learning Centre, part of the Creative City Campus. The building currently serves as student thesis space before the full renovation is completed.
“We are very grateful to Rosalie and Isadore Sharp for supporting our strong tradition of experiential learning that takes place both in the studio and in the community,” says Dr. Sara Diamond, President and Vice-Chancellor of OCAD University. “This flexible, multi-use student complex will provide dedicated, maker-based work areas, as well as spaces for collaboration and engagement with visiting artists and designers.”
The Sharps also donated $5 million in 2004 towards building the internationally acclaimed Sharp Centre for Design, designed by famed British architect Will Alsop. The building has been lauded by architect and arts critics alike and is one of the must-see stops for visitors to Toronto.
“We are inspired by the creation of a centre that will be a hub for student activity and experimentation, and we have great respect for President Sara Diamond’s dedication and imagination,” says Rosalie Sharp. “With this donation, we are helping mark the Dundas Street gateway to OCAD University’s campus and Toronto’s heart of creativity and innovation.” Since 1998, Rosalie and Isadore Sharp have donated more than $9.5 million to OCAD U.